GEELONG defender Harry Taylor says the Cats need to find a "mental edge" in order to come out firing against Collingwood in Perth on Thursday night.
The Cats sit second on the ladder with four wins from their opening six games, but Taylor is wary of Collingwood's ability to succeed on-field despite having some well-publicised issues off it in recent weeks.
"Teams probably play their best with their backs against the wall, or in football terms you would say hunted or be the hunter," Taylor said on Wednesday.
THE LADDER Where is your team sitting?
"Most teams who view themselves as the hunter, the ones doing the chasing, seem to get themselves in the best mindset to play well.
"We need to find a mental edge, a real sharp edge to compete well against them."
Taylor says last year's qualifying final loss to the Pies won't be weighing on the Cats as a whole, but it could certainly fuel individuals who were flat in that game.
Collingwood has won five of the six first quarters it has played in 2020, and Taylor knows his side cannot afford to get off to a sluggish start on Thursday night.
ROUNDS 7-8 Check out the full fixture
"They have been terrific in their starts to games, and in the shortened version of the games if you don't start well it's very hard to catch up as we found out against Carlton," Taylor said.
The Cats have won three first quarters this year and came out with the four points in all those games, and their fourth win came in round six against the Lions where they trailed by just two points after the first term.
Collingwood forward Brody Mihocek sits equal-second in the Coleman Medal race with 12 goals this year, and after playing on him in a pre-season game this year, Taylor knows what to expect.
"One thing he does so well is compete and his work rate are both really high attributes," Taylor said of Mihocek.
"He creates contests when you think he might be out of it and he works really hard both ways."